Why In-the-Air Gestures Are Failing as a Mainstream User Interface
NEWS ANALYSIS: In-the-air gestures as a general computing device user interface are failing to catch on. And they're not even doing well in the games field, which would seem their natural niche.Scanning the headlines over the past year, you might be forgiven for believing that in-the-air gestures were coming soon to living room boxes, PCs, laptops, tablets and smartphones.
But in-the-air gestures won't be a mainstream user interface any time soon. I'll tell you exactly why at the end of this column. But first, let's face the fail.Amazon and Microsoft are both rumored to be working on smartphones that have front-facing optical sensors similar to the technology in Microsoft's Kinect lines of products. Kinect blew people away when Microsoft's Kinect for Xbox 360 first hit the market. The technology enabled a certain kind of game where the system knew your position and movements. It responded to in-the-air gestures. So with similar technology, you'd think that these phones would also support in-the-air gestures.
Yes, startups, science projects, makers and tinkerers are getting a lot out of the Leap Motion controller. But it's nonexistent as a mainstream user interface. The public is rejecting the interface.By the way, HP will soon ship a PC keyboard with a Leap Motion controller built in, and I'm predicting it won't be a hot seller. In-the-Air Gestures Losing Out for Games
Kinect for Xbox was the crown jewel of in-the-air gesture control. When the Xbox One shipped less than a year ago, Kinect was a required component of that gaming system. But the console wasn't competing against the Sony PlayStation as Microsoft had hoped.